Hot Docs: West Africa Today: The Lebanese and Chinese in Ghana and Senegal now available in Media Services

The film traces the history of Lebanese settlement in Ghana and Senegal from the 1860’s, when the first families arrived in the “new world” thinking they had landed in America. They quickly assimilated, learned the language, established retail stores, and interacted closely with the local population.. The Lebanese prospered until the 1970’s when nationalistic governments in Ghana and Senegal started pushing them out of retail business and into wholesale. The arrival of Chinese business owners and shopkeepers in the 1990’s further impacted a weakened Lebanese economic elite. The Chinese were very competitive and offered wares at far lower prices. The Chinese outlook was quite different from the Lebanese. They planned to make money and return to China, whereas the Lebanese, who often considered themselves as “Africans” remained fully tied to their lifestyle in Africa and often intermarried.

DVD 9190

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